Boating will not be allowed on Canton Lake through the Memorial Day weekend because the lake is full of debris from Tuesday’s tornado.
“We are telling people to stay off the water,” said Tim Coffey, park ranger at Canton Lake. “We have closed off the boat ramps.”
Two campgrounds – Canadian and Longdale – will be closed through the Memorial Day weekend.
The Big Bend and Sandy Cove campgrounds will be open but the swim beach area at Sandy Cove will be closed because of debris washing up on the shoreline, Coffey said.
The Canadian campground, one of the busiest on Canton Lake, received major damage from the tornado. The courtesy boat dock was destroyed and several camper trailers were demolished.
“There is just nothing left,” Canton fisherman Donnie Jinkens said of the campground. “Debris is scattered everywhere.”
The few people camping at Canadian took shelter inside a bathroom on the campground.
“They bunkered down in a bathroom made out of blocks,” Jinkens said. “Some of them said the roof was going up and down like it was going to pull the roof off.”
All of the campers were unharmed. Coffey said the only injury reported around the lake was from a permanent trailer park near the Canadian campground, but that was unconfirmed.
“Thank goodness this didn’t happen in the middle of Memorial Day weekend,” Coffey said. “We would have been full down there.”